NBA: LeBron, Cavaliers outgun OKC Thunder

Field Level Media via Reuters

Posted at Feb 14 2018 12:12 PM

Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) handles the ball in front of Oklahoma City Thunder forward Josh Huestis (34) at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mark D. Smith, USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

LeBron James scored 37 points as the visiting Cleveland Cavaliers beat the Oklahoma City Thunder, 120-112, Tuesday at Chesapeake Energy Arena.

James shot 14 of 23 from the field and added eight assists and eight rebounds. It was his 417th career 30-point game and fifth with at least 35 points this season.

JR Smith hit six 3-pointers and added 18 points as the Cavaliers shot 44.4 percent (16 of 36) from 3-point range. Cleveland made at least 15 3-pointers for the 15th time in 2017-18.

The Cavaliers won their fourth straight and received productive showings from their new acquisitions who were making their second appearance with the team.

Rodney Hood added 14 points and hit four 3-pointers, Jordan Clarkson also contributed 14, and Larry Nance Jr. contributed 13 points and nine rebounds. George Hill contributed seven points as Cleveland's four newcomers combined to score 48 points.

Paul George led the Thunder with 25 points. Carmelo Anthony, back after missing two games with a sprained right ankle, added 24.

Steven Adams contributed 22 points and 17 rebounds, and Russell Westbrook returned from missing two games with a sprained left ankle to total 21 points and 12 assists.

Oklahoma City lost for the sixth time in its past 18 games by shooting 44.4 percent from the floor and missing 24 of 35 3-point attempts.

Cleveland made 51.1 percent of its field-goal attempts.

James reached 30 points by hitting a 3-pointer as the Cavaliers opened a 78-68 lead with 7:06 remaining in the third quarter. The Thunder roared back with a 14-3 run and took a one-point lead on a free throw by Adams with 3:28 remaining.

Cleveland countered with eight straight points and held a 91-87 lead going into the fourth. The Cavs started the fourth with an 11-5 spurt and grabbed a 102-92 lead on a turnaround jumper by Jeff Green with 7:23 left.

James surpassed 35 points with a high-arching layup that made it 115-106 with 50 seconds remaining and essentially sealed the win.

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